Supported planar bilayers in studies on immune cell adhesion and communication.
Groves JT., Dustin ML.
Supported planar bilayers have been used extensively in immunology to study molecular interactions at interfaces as a model for cell-cell interaction. Examples include Fc receptor-mediated adhesion and signaling and formation of the immunological synapse between T cells and antigen-presenting cells. The advantage of the supported planar bilayer system is control of the bilayer composition and the optical advantages of imaging the cell-bilayer or bilayer-bilayer interface by various types of trans-, epi- and total internal reflection illumination. Supported planar bilayers are simple to form by liposome fusion and recent advances in micro- and nanotechnology greatly extend the power of supported bilayers to address key questions in immunology and cell biology.